Sunday, July 31, 2016

Before and After

We get blind to things around us all the time, things that may be past their prime, to say the least.

As I took lots of photos recently for this blog I really saw just how worn out and ugly my pressing station had become.  So I replaced it and OH, what a difference!


So nice and clean!


Dirty and torn, not nice to look at or work on.  Time to change it.

First, the table is an old computer table we got many years ago when computer systems were big and bulky, including the printer, CPU, large monitor, all the stuff we had back then.  It is 30" x 60", extremely sturdy and has a large space underneath where I keep garment-making stuff.

I had my husband cut a piece of board to lay on top and, because he is an engineer and a woodworker, he rounded the edges and made a beautiful, smooth surface to cover, 22" x 60":

This is the reverse side after I removed the staples that held the old muslin top in place and threw it away--too yucky!  On the bottom here is a doubled piece of Warm and Natural cotton batt--leftover from covering my 8 foot x 9 foot design wall.  It was dirty too so I just flipped it over.  Don't add more than two layers of firm, cotton batting--you want a firm pressing surface, not a mattress.

I cut the new muslin 30" x 70", about the size of the old piece, laid it on the table and then placed the batt and board on top of that new muslin, leaving about an even amount of excess all around.   All I used is a basic office stapler, nothing fancy, and didn't go to a lot of trouble on the corners--no one will see those.  Those staples were easy to remove too, using a simple staple puller.  And just so I wouldn't have to figure it out again, I wrote those measurements in Sharpie on the bottom of the board along with the date:

The last time I changed it was the day I was expecting 150-200 guild members for a Studio Tour, a few years ago.  That was one of those "Oh, no, look how dirty that thing is" moments too.

Time to reassemble the pressing station:

 I store two old cutting mats under the board--when I cut out garments I just lift off the pressing board and I'm ready to cut out pattern pieces.

On top of those cutting mats is a scrap piece of floor rug non-slip stuff, to keep the board firmly in place.  That's it, all done. It didn't take 15 minutes to do and would have been quicker if I wasn't taking photos of the process:

She's so pretty!  Of course, you can use decorator fabric, or that silver shiny stuff you can order but I'm happy with muslin--I can see what I'm doing clearly, the cost is small, and maybe I won't let it get so ugly before I change it again!

Just in case you want to know, I use a small "dorm" size ironing board on top of the pressing station when I have to press shirts or other garments.  My husband doesn't like it so when he has a bunch of shirts he wants ironed, he drags the old ironing board in from the garage and irons them himself.  Win!

Let's Quilt!



  1. Your pressing station looks fabulous now! Smart move to mark the size so you won't have to drag the tape measure over the board the next time!!

  2. Win?!? DOUBLE win...he irons his own shirts!!! I hope I can make such a large pressing station in my new space. Thanks for the tips!

  3. I bought a sturdy ironing board to hold my Big Board and bought DH an iron/board holder for our closet. Included the old board so that he didn't continue to invade the sewing room to press his shirts!!